Creating vs. receiving

You may recollect that, when I first tried to figure out what kind of book Trang was, I failed miserably. I thought it was "fun action adventure!" which it was clearly not. And I'm not the only one who has had these problems.

I mentioned this difficulty once to my sister, specifically this notion that Trang was fun action adventure. She immediately said, "What? Oh, no. I could see why maybe it was that way to write, but to read? No."

I've been watching The IT Crowd, which is excellent. One episode, "Something Happened," really applied here: In the episode, an IT guy named Roy (who is vaguely social and is played by Bridesmaid's Chris O'Dowd) confesses to another IT guy, Moss (who totally has Asperger's and is played by Richard Ayoade), that when he got a massage, the male masseuse ended the session by smooching him on the fanny.

Roy was quite traumatized by this and is afraid to tell anyone because he is terrified that people will find it funny. Of course, the audience did and does and always will. Roy confesses all this to Moss, who stares at him, without responding, for what O'Dowd later describes as a "giant pause." The longer Moss pauses, the funnier the scene becomes, because the audience is just waiting for him to start laughing. It's completely on par with the schawarma scene in The Avengers--the longer the silence lasts, the funnier it becomes.

Buuuuuuut...if you watch the blooper reel, you discover (8:12) that the giant pause was because O'Dowd forgot that the next line was his.

So, if you're O'Dowd, that episode is "The one where I totally blew it, and they left the mistake in to keep me humble, I guess." If you're the viewer, it's "The episode where Ayoade proves, without a doubt, that he is the on the same level as Gene Wilder as a comic-pause genius!!!"

You just never know. Everyone totally loves the scenes in Trust that are told from the point of view of an alien, and yet I was very nervous about those scenes, because they're such a departure from the rest of the book. But even though I was nervous about it, I went for it. I think you have to, because what people really love about, say, The Avengers is the weird, quirky shit--the schawarma--not the fact that it's a competent action movie.